File picture: Rafael Marchante / Reuters.
File picture: Rafael Marchante / Reuters.

Winners and losers of the 2020 Formula One season

By Reuters Time of article published Dec 23, 2020

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By Alan Baldwin

LONDON - The Formula One season ended in Abu Dhabi on December 13, with 17 races in a season disrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic. In this article, Reuters takes a look at some of the winners and losers of the 2020 season:

THE WINNERS

Mercedes: Winners of both titles for an unprecedented seventh year in a row, Mercedes passed Williams in the list of all-time race winners with 115. The team won 13 of the races and started all but two on pole.

Lewis Hamilton: The Briton became the most successful Formula One driver of all time with a record 95 race wins and a seventh championship that equalled Ferrari great Michael Schumacher's record haul. He won 11 of the races and beat team mate and overall runner-up Valtteri Bottas by 124 points.

Honda: The only engine manufacturer apart from Mercedes to win races, Honda powered Red Bull's Max Verstappen to two wins including Sunday's at Yas Marina and also Pierre Gasly to an emotional victory at Monza for AlphaTauri.

Sergio Perez: The Mexican won in Bahrain on his 190th start, becoming his country's first race winner in 50 years and handing Racing Point a first success under that name. He finished fourth overall in a fine year for a driver shown the door by his team and with no seat secured for 2021.

Pierre Gasly: A standout season for the Frenchman who has rebuilt his reputation at AlphaTauri after being dropped by sister team Red Bull. His win at Monza, the first French winner since Olivier Panis in 1996, was a highlight of the season.

McLaren: Third overall, their highest position since 2012. The former champions made steady progress in their last season with Renault before entering a new phase with Mercedes power.

Formula One: Successfully staged a season at a time of pandemic, reviving races that had fallen off the calendar and inventing some new ones. Safety also triumphed, with Frenchman Romain Grosjean walking away from a fiery crash that split his car in two in Bahrain.

THE LOSERS

Ferrari: The sport's oldest and most successful team suffered their worst season since 1980, when they finished 10th overall. Ferrari failed to win a race and ended up a distant sixth after suffering a drop in engine performance. Departing Sebastian Vettel had a lacklustre year but team mate Charles Leclerc at least provided hope for the future.

File picture: Giuseppe Cacace / POOL / AFP.

Williams: The former champions failed to score for the first time since the 1970s. The team was sold in August and the founding family departed. George Russell, although a Williams driver, ranks as a winner for his exceptional performance at Mercedes as stand-in for COVID-hit Hamilton.

Valtteri Bottas: Being Hamilton's team mate is a thankless task but Bottas ended up further away than ever. He won two races but the points gap to Hamilton was a chasm.

Haas: Another tough year for the U.S.-owned team, who finished ninth and cleared out both their drivers Kevin Magnussen and Romain Grosjean.

Racing Point: Despite Perez's stirring win, the Canadian-owned team missed chances and were docked 15 points for breaking the rules with a car closely modelled on last year's Mercedes. They finished fourth ultimately, seven points behind McLaren.

Crowds: The pandemic meant most races were staged without crowds. The highlight races of Monaco and Singapore were cancelled entirely along with all races in Asia and the Americas. Vietnam's planned debut never happened.

Reuters

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